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Way to anesthetize ants?

ant painting acrylic experiment

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5 replies to this topic

#1 Offline byungkyulee - Posted March 27 2023 - 11:11 PM

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Hello everybody.

 

After reading this article, I also wanted to run a simple experiment by painting them with non-toxic acrylic paint.

 

I googled and found this video on youtube.

 

Since I don't have CO2 tank setup, my original plan was to:

1) disconnect the nest from the outworld (covering each end with cotton balls)

2) put the outworld into the fridge

3) when the ants slow down, take them out from the fridge and start painting them with non-toxic acrylic paint.

 

The result was a big failure, and I ended up killing 2 worker ants.

* The species is P. rugosus.

 

They slowed down quite a lot after 20-25 min in the fridge, but they could still walk around. I didn't want to put them inside there too long, so I took them out before it goes beyond 25 min. But as I took them out and tried to paint on them, they were slowly getting back on speed. And when I actually picked one up to paint on it, it actively resisted, jumbled with the acrylic paint, jumped back into the outworld, mingled with sands and another worker ants... it was a mess. I tried couple more times but the result was the same. I also couldn't even paint them clean like ppl in the video above.

 

 

 

So I googled how to anesthetize ants after all this mess.

 

Cold anesthesia is slower; 4 °C is sufficient, and colder temperatures are not recommended. (reference)

Average household fridge is around 4-7 °C. I don't know why it didn't work. Should I wait longer than 25 min? I don't know.

 

On the other hand, I found this interesting post about making this "insect anesthetizing" tool in here.

But I wonder if I can achieve similar result just with this baking soda and vinegar setup.

 

I might come up with a simple anesthetizing chamber with a plastic case, a jar, and 3/8"tubing, and try baking soda and vinegar method.

 

What do you guys think?

Would it be dangerous and inefficient because I cannot control the amount of CO2?

Or would it be fine if I take em out as soon as they pass out in the chamber?

 

Any opinion, advice, questions, all welcome!

 



#2 Offline aznphenom - Posted March 28 2023 - 5:29 AM

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Hello everybody.

 

After reading this article, I also wanted to run a simple experiment by painting them with non-toxic acrylic paint.

 

I googled and found this video on youtube.

 

Since I don't have CO2 tank setup, my original plan was to:

1) disconnect the nest from the outworld (covering each end with cotton balls)

2) put the outworld into the fridge

3) when the ants slow down, take them out from the fridge and start painting them with non-toxic acrylic paint.

 

The result was a big failure, and I ended up killing 2 worker ants.

* The species is P. rugosus.

 

They slowed down quite a lot after 20-25 min in the fridge, but they could still walk around. I didn't want to put them inside there too long, so I took them out before it goes beyond 25 min. But as I took them out and tried to paint on them, they were slowly getting back on speed. And when I actually picked one up to paint on it, it actively resisted, jumbled with the acrylic paint, jumped back into the outworld, mingled with sands and another worker ants... it was a mess. I tried couple more times but the result was the same. I also couldn't even paint them clean like ppl in the video above.

 

 

 

So I googled how to anesthetize ants after all this mess.

 

Cold anesthesia is slower; 4 °C is sufficient, and colder temperatures are not recommended. (reference)

Average household fridge is around 4-7 °C. I don't know why it didn't work. Should I wait longer than 25 min? I don't know.

 

On the other hand, I found this interesting post about making this "insect anesthetizing" tool in here.

But I wonder if I can achieve similar result just with this baking soda and vinegar setup.

 

I might come up with a simple anesthetizing chamber with a plastic case, a jar, and 3/8"tubing, and try baking soda and vinegar method.

 

What do you guys think?

Would it be dangerous and inefficient because I cannot control the amount of CO2?

Or would it be fine if I take em out as soon as they pass out in the chamber?

 

Any opinion, advice, questions, all welcome!

 

Yes. A fridge 100% works. 25min isn't enough. It depends on the size of the specimen so you just have to keep checking until they stop moving. You won't have much time after taking them out. So to do what you want to do, you most likely have to do it while they're in the fridge.


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#3 Offline DRpepper - Posted March 28 2023 - 5:31 AM

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I would use a queen Bee marking pen that Beekeepers use. In addition i would use a species like Camponotus and slowly put some workers into below freezing temps and then take them out and paint them. if you get the workers cold enough they should be completly still 


Edited by DRpepper, March 28 2023 - 5:33 AM.


#4 Offline nurbs - Posted March 28 2023 - 10:10 AM

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If you don't have access to C02, get a bowl. Fill it with crushed ice. Use a thick acrylic square or another smaller bowl and place it in the center of the larger bowl, or place the square on top of the smaller bowl. Whatever is easiest way for you to paint the ants.

 

Put the ants in the fridge to slow them, then put it in the smaller bowl/acrylic square. They'll remain sluggish and should give you enough time to paint them without harming them. I've done this with beetles and ants, it works.


Edited by nurbs, March 28 2023 - 10:11 AM.

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#5 Offline byungkyulee - Posted March 28 2023 - 10:11 PM

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Put the ants in the fridge to slow them, then put it in the smaller bowl/acrylic square. They'll remain sluggish and should give you enough time to paint them without harming them. I've done this with beetles and ants, it works.

 

How long would it take for you to do that successfully?

 

The thing is, I am renting a room rn and my landlord doesn't know that I keep ants so it's kinda dangerous to use fridge..  :facepalm:

Also it takes plenty of time to fully anesthetize ants using fridge, so I was thinking of making CO2 with baking soda and vinegar.

 

Has anyone used CO2 method?



#6 Offline byungkyulee - Posted March 30 2023 - 1:52 PM

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 I've done this with beetles and ants, it works.

 

Also, I have one more question. What did you use when you paint them? Acrylic paint? or bee marking pen?







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